Getting to Know Hunter Reid at Suwannee Hulaween
Hunter Reid is a house head, and he’s not afraid to show it. Whether it’s vocal and melodic or just for the booty bounce, Hunter’s music is something to dance to. We caught up with this busy artist (and his girlfriend Liz) at Suwannee Hulaween to chat about where he draws his inspiration and what his goals are as an artist.
Sensible Reason: How did you get into music?
Hunter Reid: I was just kind of around it always when I was young, then I got more into Miami stuff because that’s where I’m from. Deadmau5 is a major influence for me when I was first starting.
SR: When did that start?
HR: Around 2009, 2010.
SR: What did you want to create when you were listening to Deadmau5?
HR: House. It kind of started more melodic and stuff, I wanted to be Deadmau5, but I kind of found my own thing and created my own sound. Booty house.
SR: You’re part of the Dirtybird crew. How did you get from wanting to be Deadmau5 to working with the Dirtybird label?
HR: I had a mentor named Mark Starr. He’s very OG Dirtybird, and he suggested maybe I should go into that realm.
SR: Do you feel as though that influenced your creative process?
HR: Yes, because it wasn’t as if we were making the same type of music.
SR: For the better?
HR: Yes. He didn’t say it in so many words but he kind of pushed me in the right direction.
SR: Do you have any desire to go back to what you originally started?
HR: [My girlfriend] wants me to, but I don’t know.
Liz: I think eventually he will.
SR: What makes his original music better?
Liz: I don’t think it’s better, I just think that he has a natural gravitation towards melodic sounding music, but with that dark bass.
SR: We’re currently at Jai Wolf, you’re clearly drawn to this type of music.
Liz: I think he’s still trying to figure out his path but I think his original path is where he will end up.
SR: What’s your goal overall as an artist?
HR: I don’t really know, I don’t really have a goal, I just really enjoy it and enjoy playing the music that I made in my room for people. I’m a part of this label called Psycho Disco! I’m A&R for that label. It’s fun.
SR: What do you want for Psycho Disco! working in that position?
HR: I’m not really the one that makes the final decision necessarily. I get the demos sent to me, and I kind of filter it for the boss and then he makes the final decision based on that. He also gets sent tracks directly and that’s kind of how that happens. I make booty tech/house. There’s a lot of that on there. The way the boss, Treasure Fingers, describes it as that disco has gotten really weird since the 70s and 80s so here we are now. I guess that kind of fits in that.
SR: What brings you to Hulaween?
HR: I got a text message [laughs] that asked if I wanted to play Hula, so I said yeah. I only live like an hour away. I grew up in Miami and I currently live in Tallahassee.
SR: Do you have any desire to relocate anywhere else, or is Florida your spot?
HR: I really would like to go back down to South Florida if possible.
SR: What draws you down there?
HR: Family. I really miss my family a lot. I work for True Leaf, it’s a medical cannabis company. All of our grow houses are up here so I’m sort of forced to live up here.
SR: With you working as A&R for Psycho Disco! and this cannabis company, is the music you make sort of a side project for the rest of your projects in your life? Which comes first?
HR: It’s definitely my favorite thing to do, but you’ve got to be real. Sometimes you can’t live your dreams unless you’re paying for them. So I’m working another dream to be able to do this one.
SR: The music scene is very up and down. Was the music an accidental success?
HR: Not really, I’ve always tried. I think the cannabis job was accidental.
SR: But you’re passionate about it, right?
HR: Yes. I went from the bottom tier, lowest level employee and now I’m one of the top managers now, so it’s become very serious. I’m just waiting for the one day where I don’t have to do this anymore when I don’t have to wake up at 7 AM anymore for work.
SR: What will get you to that point?
HR: Just gotta make more music. The only thing that’s going to carry me is the music I make.
SR: So what’s next for you? Shameless plug time!
HR: I’ve got an EP coming out today. It’s called Black & White, it has 2 songs called “Black & White” and “Shockwav” it’s out today on Psycho Disco! Two tracks I’m very excited about. One of them is a little bit older and I’ve been playing it for a while and the other one is brand spanking new and it’s coming right out. I also have another song coming out next week on the Psycho Disco! compilation album called Psycho Killers Vol.2. That one is a Halloween release.
Who else is on the album?
Liz: Eyes Everywhere, Fritz Carlton, Holt 88, Hunter Reid…
HR: I helped pick the songs and she knows better than I do! We’ve got Torrfisk and Teknicoz those are both Dirtybird guys so shout out to them as well. Holt 88 and me, it’s track is called “Need to Get” it was kind of interesting making that one with him because my buddy Raphael doesn’t speak any English at all and he lives in Brazil and we communicated the entire track through gifs.
SR: That’s very interesting!
HR: Yeah, Google Translate and gifs. If you’ve ever used Google Translate you know it doesn’t always come out right so it was really funny to work with him.
Liz: The track is dope though!